The Princess and the Styrofoam Cup: Theologizing the Evangelical Purity Dialectic
Reimer, Vanessa Christine
MetadataShow full item record
This doctoral dissertation employs critical discourse analysis and feminist life writing to contextualize and critique North Americas purity culture, therein arguing that the contemporary popularization and commodification of girls purity are influenced by evangelicalisms burgeoning subcultural influence. This project accordingly explores how purity as discourse is constructed in a selection of evangelical guidance literature that is written for girls and young women, and it further draws from the authors lived experience as an evangelical subcultural insider to elucidate how girls and women may interpret and negotiate these ideologies. Beyond premarital sexual abstinence, this project reveals how evangelical-Complementarian theological frameworks demand that girls and women embrace their inferior status in the divine patriarchal gender hierarchy in order to achieve true purity and become Christs princess-brides. Such frameworks also address girls as evangelicalisms mothers of tomorrow who must physically and pedagogically reproduce the next generation of true believers for their religious subculture. The project concludes by proposing alternative feminist theologies that girls and women may utilize in challenging oppressive purity discourses, cultivating empowered spiritualities, and engaging in restorative social justice work.